From Our Craft Table: Gnomes

These adorable little gnomes can be made to match any holiday or season, and require only a few simple supplies and steps.  The instructions are right here.  Peg dolls and felt can be found in our school store, and kits will be coming soon.



A downloadable file with properly scaled pattern pieces is here: Printable Gnome Pattern Pieces







Alumni Night – Ask People Who Have Been There

“Learning for Life: Meet our Alumni”  Wednesday,  January 7, 6:30-8pm in the Hall. Free


Seeking Applicants: 6th Grade Teacher

Are you our Sixth Grade Teacher for 2015-2016, ready to lead the way into middle school at Anchorage Waldorf School?

A strong and independent spirit, a love of adventure and the natural world, and hands, heart and mind dedicated to the ideals and practical realities of Waldorf education – if you have these attributes, Anchorage Waldorf School is seeking you to lead a strong fifth grade class into middle school. A Waldorf teaching certificate or proven equivalent experience, particularly in middle school grades, is required. Experience teaching in a mixed-age or blended-grades model is a plus.

The individual we seek will have a proven track record of successful teaching in the classroom. You will have effective classroom management skills, and a deep joy for both learning and teaching. We seek candidates who are innovative, curious, skilled, imaginative, and generous. Our teachers are entrepreneurs in the classroom: not for commerce, but for imagination, inspiration and intuition. Along with the school community, you will be building capacity in the children with whom you work.

Anchorage is nestled between the ocean and the majestic peaks of the Chugach range. The northern lights really do stream overhead, and just wait until you see the view from Flattop, with snow-covered Denali silhouetted in the distance and our sparkling city spread gently at your feet! It’s true that we love to ski, fish, climb, and bike here, but we are also artists and musicians, thinkers and pioneers. Anchorage is home to two universities, a renowned performing arts center, a symphony, an opera, local food and farmer’s markets, and several world class museums. Moose, bear, lynx, and other wild creatures wander the city.

Though small, our school embodies the Alaskan spirit that continues to shine brightly through the long, cold winters. We are a vibrant and hard-working community, with dedicated teachers, a strong festival life, and diverse community-enrichment opportunities. We currently serve children from birth through fifth grade, with a commitment to rebuilding our middle school (that’s where you come in!). We have adopted a mixed age grades model and a new governance structure to support that effort. Anchorage Waldorf School was founded in 1992, and has been serving children and families for more than 21 years.

Is our beacon drawing you north? Contact us at: with a resume, cover letter, one-page biography, and three letters of professional reference. We look forward to hearing from you!

Nursery Class for Three Year Olds begins January 5

We welcome Jenifer Henrich, our new nursery teacher at AWS! Under her capable guidance, we will begin a nursery class for three year olds in January 2015. Our nursery program is the very first tender step away from home for little ones. Your child will experience the gentle rhythm of a short week (Monday thru Wednesday) for early childhood youngsters, paced just right for the wee toddler. Children must be toilet trained, and the class has only five spots – just the right size to nurture their love for school and each other. This sweet class is like a little family. Contact to find out more.

From Our Kitchen: Apple Butter


-5 1/2 lb apples: peeled, cored, and finely chopped
-1/2 tsp cinnamon
Optional additions
-maple syrup
-ground clove
-apple juice or cider

Cooking Instructions

1. Fill slow cooker with apple pieces and cook covered on high for 4 hours.  Stir regularly.  Add a splash of juice or cider to avoid sticking if desired.

2. Turn off heat and mash apples.  (For extra smoothness, place apples in blender until desired consistency is achieved.)

3. Add cinnamon and any other additions.  Use maple syrup to sweeten or remove bitterness.

4. Cook uncovered on high for 45-75 minutes until desired thickness is achieved.

5. Once cool, the mixture can be canned or stored in the refrigerator.  To preserve freshness, add a dash of lemon juice.

AWS Hosts Foundation Studies

Exploring color

Foundation Studies color exploration


Handwork experience led by Diane — felting

Black and White

Studies in light and dark with charcoal



Class with Nathaniel

Nathaniel Williams from the Center for Anthroposophy leads morning study.


Variations on color

From Our Craft Table: Paper Lanterns

Here is a set of instructions that children or adults can use to make a lovely paper lantern, whether you are celebrating Martinmas, going on a lantern walk, or just brightening up your home.  A printable copy of the directions is available at the bottom of the page.

lantern insturctions.1

lantern insturctions.2
 Printable lantern instructions

Community Enrichment Classes & Events

Feeling crafty? Interested in enriching your parenting skills?  AWS  offers many adult opportunities to learn and grow. We hope you can join us for one or more of these events. Register with Mira by calling the office at 333-9062. Payment will hold your spot.


Conflict Resolution for Young Children: A Workshop for Parents and Educators” with Vanessa Kohlhaas, Wednesday, January 28, 6:30-8pm in the Hall. Cost is $10

It can be difficult for parents to know what to do when their child has a conflict, whether with them, another adult or other children. Conflict situations can happen suddenly, and don’t usually allow time to prepare a response. While we want our children to be happy, conflict is a normal and necessary part of child development. Such moments and situations allow the child to explore the needs and expectations of others in relationship to his or her own experiences and desires. How can we best support our children during these moments? How can we facilitate the child’s self-expression while still respecting others? What is the adult’s role during times of such conflict? This workshop will explore these and other questions, and offer practical guidelines for helping parents and teachers.

Vanessa Kohlhaas has worked as an early childhood educator for the past fifteen years. She has a Master’s in Education, as well as certifications as a public school special  education teacher and Waldorf early childhood teacher. In addition to these trainings,  she studied at the Pikler Institute in Budapest, Hungary and Resources for Infant Educarers (RIE) in Los Angeles, CA.  She currently works as an early childhood teacher at the Whidbey Island Waldorf School in Washington State. She is visiting AWS with WECAN (Waldorf Early Childhood Association of  North America)


“Making Math Meaningful” with Laura Thorpe, Wednesday February 4 RESCHEDULED


“Waldorf Mixed Age Grades Model and the Bay School” with Scott Springer from the Bay School in Blue Hill Maine, Wednesday, February 18, 2015, 6:30-8pm in the Hall. Free

For more than 20 years, the Bay School has successfully used the mixed age grades model in their Waldorf classrooms, all the way through 8th grade.  Scott has taught there for 20 years, and serves as both faculty chair and faculty board representative. We are honored to host him and learn more about this model newly adopted by the Anchorage Waldorf School.


“The Temperaments in Waldorf  Education” with Virginia Smith, Wednesday, February 25, 6:30-8pm in the Hall. Cost is $10.

What can we learn from the way a Waldorf teacher works with the four temperaments in the classroom? Identifying and understanding our own temperament, and our child’s, gives us a helpful tool for our parenting and teaching toolbox. Join us for a lively presentation and discussion about the temperaments.

Virginia Smith has been a Waldorf teacher and adult educator for more than 15 years in Calgary, Vancouver, and other Canadian Waldorf schools.



From Our Kitchen: Chocolate Zucchini Cupcakes

Enjoy these Michaelmas harvest treats from AWS grandparent Beth Cole:

2 cups shredded zucchini
1/2 cup softened butter
1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup cooking oil
2 eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups plain flour
4 Tablespoons cocoa
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves (optional)
1 6-oz. package chocolate chips (you may want to use miniature chocolate chips if you are making miniature cup cakes.)

Cream butter, sugar, oil. eggs, sour cream, and vanilla in large bowl. Stir in remaining ingredients, except zucchini and chocolate chips. Fold in zucchini.

Place cup cake liners in muffin pans; (miniature muffin pans were used for Michaelmas lunch). Spoon batter into muffin pans, about 1/2 full. Sprinkle chocolate chips on batter in pans. Bake at 325 degrees until done.

(If you prefer, you may bake the cake batter in a 9 x 13″ pan, two 9″ pans, or loaf pans.)

Annual Giving Goal Met!

In late June we received a generous matching challenge grant of $10,000. Within one week, every dollar was matched, eclipsing our goal of $45,000 for our Annual Giving campaign. We received gifts from far and wide, including many AWS former teachers and alumni families. Thank you! We could not have done it without you.